In a dazzling triumph at the 66th Grammy Awards in LA, Shakti, the fusion band led by Indian musical maestros Shankar Mahadevan and Zakir Hussain, soared to victory. Bagging the prestigious Global Music Album award for their latest release, This Moment, Shakti made India proud on the global stage. The gripping ceremony unfolded on a Monday in Los Angeles, creating ripples of excitement that echoed all the way back to India.
The Birth of Shakti
The roots of Shakti trace back to 1973, emerging in the aftermath of the dissolution of the first incarnation of the Mahavishnu Orchestra. A musical journey that stood the test of time, Shakti brought together virtuosos like John McLaughlin, Zakir Hussain, Shankar Mahadevan, V Selvaganesh, and Ganesh Rajagopalan. Fast forward to 2020, the band experienced a revival, and after a hiatus of 46 years, they unleashed This Moment on June 23, 2023.
Musical Prowess in This Moment
This Moment, Shakti's latest offering, is a testament to the band's enduring brilliance. Comprising eight captivating tracks, including Shrini's Dream, Bending the Rules, Karuna, Giriraj Sudha, Mohanam, and Las Palmas, the album is a fusion masterpiece. Each note resonates with the band's commitment to pushing musical boundaries, showcasing a seamless blend of tradition and innovation.
Members of the Fusion Symphony
Shakti boasts a stellar lineup, featuring iconic figures in the world of music. The ensemble includes the legendary guitarist John McLaughlin, tabla virtuoso Zakir Hussain, versatile vocalist Shankar Mahadevan, percussionist extraordinaire V Selvaganesh, and the soulful violinist Ganesh Rajagopalan. Together, they form a musical symphony that transcends borders and captivates audiences worldwide.
The Ecstatic Grammy Nomination
The announcement of Shakti's Grammy nomination was met with sheer jubilation among the band members. Selvaganesh Vinayakram, the percussionist, recalled the thrilling moment when he learned about the nomination. My son said, ‘So did you watch it?’ I said, ‘What did I watch? No, I haven’t.’ Then he said, ‘Shakti was nominated.’ I was freaking out.” The news rippled through the band, sparking immense joy and anticipation.
Shankar Mahadevan's Gratitude
Upon clinching the Grammy, Shankar Mahadevan, the charismatic vocalist, took the stage with heartfelt gratitude. Thank you, boys! he exclaimed, expressing his appreciation to his bandmates. Mahadevan went on to thank God, acknowledging the unwavering support from their families, friends, and the entire nation of India. In a touching moment, he dedicated the award to his wife, emphasizing that every note he composes is a tribute to her.
An Ode to India
Closing the ceremony on a patriotic note, Shankar Mahadevan underscored the band's deep admiration for India. He dedicated the Grammy win to the country, symbolizing the pride and honor Shakti felt in representing their roots on the global stage. The triumphant fusion band, Shakti, not only made history but also left an indelible mark on the hearts of music enthusiasts worldwide.
Shakti's journey from the revival of the band to the Grammy glory with This Moment is a testament to the timeless power of fusion music and the unwavering dedication of its exceptional members.